Azeri Reportedly Heading Back in Training with Lukas

Azeri, who has not raced since Sept. 28 due to an injured tendon, could be going back into training and heading to D. Wayne Lukas' barn. According to the Daily Racing Form, Michael Paulson, who manages his father Allen Paulson's Living Trust, could be sending the 2002 Horse of the Year to Lukas in the near future.

Azeri has been laid up in Kentucky for about two months. Whether she would retire or return to racing was never quite clear. She finished second, two lengths behind Got Koko, in the Sept. 28 Lady's Secret Breeders' Cup Handicap (gr. II) at Santa Anita. That loss was her first since February 2001. Laura de Seroux supervised Azeri through all of her 16 starts to date.

Michael Paulson told the Form that a recent examination of Azeri showed "no swelling, no fibers out of alignment. The insurance report says it's a 'miraculous recovery,' " he said.

Azeri's career record is 14 wins and two second-place finishes in 16 career starts. She has $3,044,820 in earnings. Eleven of her victories were in graded stakes races, including the 2002 Breeders' Cup Distaff (gr. I).

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